Heart, Mind, Brain & Behaviour

Hi, I'm Syl.
Today, our topic is







the future.



This time, we go Quantum

Last week I got the chance to interview Spiros Michalakis, a quantum physicist at Caltech University who also acts as Science consultant for Marvel films (nbd). It was one of the most exciting conversations I’ve ever had; there’s something about all things Quantum that brings a sense of wonder and curiosity about the world which is childlike and fun and exuberant, and that certainly came through in this interview. In Spiros’ own research, he discovers that there is an infinite number of infinite universes of questions. Take a moment to savour the beauty of this reality. It’s pretty freaking amazing. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.


Freedom and Uncertainty

From early on, from the age I could assert myself, I chose freedom. It was not an easy choice; it meant disappointing some, angering others and distancing myself from all that had happened before. It meant taking perpetual risk and forsaking things, situations and sometimes friends. But the alternative, to travel life on a prescribed path, full of certainty and safety, seemed like death to me. So I ventured. Over and over, I would feel the unease of a life that was too sure to be right. And at that moment, something deep within me spoke and pushed me to take some 90 degree turn toward something new. There is a novelty to this that is alluring. And one must not be seduced by the allure of novelty alone. Because that in itself becomes just another addiction. When the heart speaks to us, though, and tells us “this is no […]


Fall, Dive, or Float

  This life is like a very long, slow fall off a cliff. Or out of an airplane. When we’re born, we come out screaming, like a first-time skydiver, squeezed by contractions out of the birth canal an into this world and it’s loud and bright and terrifying. There we were, happily breathing underwater,  minding our own business; floating for several months, then at the end being hugged all around by our mothers organs, all the time hearing the soothing shush-shush sounds of the blood rushing around her body, dampening the clang of the outer world to a soothing gentle roar. Until we got big enough to get squished out, squeezed through tunnel of bones, to gasp our first breath. It’s no wonder we cry. We didn’t choose to jump out of this damned airplane, right? Boom. You’re born. Welcome to the spinning world. Cut the cord and let’s go. […]


It’s Never Too Late

There’s a pertinent feature of the subconscious that stops us from achieving or even attempting to pursue our goals. It’s our tendency to feel that if we have thought about it, it’s already too late to do something about it. There’s a weird mechanism at play: inertia. Because we are naturally inert, we tend to stop trying before we even start. Instead, we carry out the day to day just as we did the day before. And we get more of the same. The best antidote to this attitude that I’ve found are the words, “It’s never too late.” It’s never too late to get healthy It’s never too late to change It’s never too late to say “I’m sorry” It’s never too late to do the thing you’ve always wanted to do People tend to construct reasonable and predictable timelines in their head, based on their (very limited) experience […]


Three Simple Ways to Grow Your Grit

One of my favourite survival stories is the one about Joe Simpson. In a brutal climbing accident, Joe was abandoned (necessarily) by his climbing partner, and fell 150 ft down a crevasse. The injuries to Joe’s shattered right leg were so bad he eventually had six surgeries to repair it, and even then they said he’d never climb again (he did). Not to mention, before Joe fell he and his partner had just summitted the west face of the Siula Grande in the Andes – no small feat, as they were the first to ever successfully climb the 20,000+ ft monster. So to start there was total physical and mental exhaustion. When he came to, after the fall, hypothermic and alone, he dragged himself out of the crevasse, across the ice, snow and rock, back to the base camp where he would eventually be rescued. The conditions were brutal: freezing […]

Learning Professional Development

How I got my boss to pay for school (and how you can too)

First off, believe it’s possible. Most people aren’t even aware that their company has a professional development (PD) budget. It’s something I think a lot of managers and HR pros mistakenly conceal, as way to save the biz money and hit their own bottom-line targets. Sad but true. If you aren’t sure about PD budget, you can just ask. You might even get time off to study. 1. Believe in the existence of PD. (Then ask.) When I decided to enroll in HBX I also knew I couldn’t afford it. But I realized that my reasons for taking the course were mostly to benefit my current workplace. 2. Choose a course that aligns with not just your personal goals but those of your workplace – answer the question: how will you taking this course benefit your company directly? It didn’t make sense to me to have the conversation until it […]


Doing HBX and losing my freaking mind

For some insane reason I decided that it would be great to do an online pre-MBA, in the midst of being a single parent, COO, and writing/teaching a course. The chaos begins on March 27. Why now and why HBX? Ummm… I like stress? In general, I believe in learning. It makes me happy and it’s useful. If you’re like me you’re probably pretty mesmerized by the vastness of the internet. It’s hard to imagine a world before Google, but I do… I remember you, Lycos 🙂 I also remember going to the galldarn library and having to sit in the reference section to flip through a ginormous encyclopedia like a fool. I remember microfiche, which now you only see in dated TV shows about the FBI. (It was actually kinda cool.) Agent Scully microfiching it up in the J Edgar Hoover library The advent of the internet and more […]